It’s been over a week since the latest Impact Wrestling PPV, Rebellion, took place in the gorgeous-looking Rebel Complex in Toronto Canada. In fact, many are still talking about how great this year’s Rebellion show was to the point that some are even calling it one of the best pay-per-views in recent Impact Wrestling history which is truly saying something.
A night that saw a tremendous blend of in-ring competition, stellar crowd reaction throughout, and of course a number of wrestling moments that can easily be seen as some of the best in the first half of the year…But which one’s were the best?
Well, that’s what we’re going to find out here with my list of the top ten moments of Rebellion 2023…
#10. Post Match Gore
We begin this list, ironically by talking about a moment that came towards the end of the first match on the Rebellion preshow.
Heath and Rhino are perhaps one of the most enduring tag teams in modern wrestling with the duo being able to find success both in the WWE and Impact albeit not with the same level of praise as their contemporaries in other promotions. During a match that took place on BTI (Before The Impact), The Red Headed Rebel and the Man-Beast took on the team of Shera and Champagne Singh (formerly known as Raj Singh) evidently the higher-ups in Impact must have liked this match as they decided to have a rematch take place on the Countdown to Rebellion show.
Long story short, Singh put his feet on the ropes to secure the victory for his team, however, Rhino refused to accept this dirty win and responded by delivering the mother of all Gores to Singh, nearly tearing him in half.
While Singh may have gotten the Champagne speared out of him by the War Machine, at least his opponents didn’t attempt to take a bite out of him which leads me to…
#9. Rosemary Bites KiLynn King
In the second preshow match to take place at Countdown to Rebellion, The Coven aka Taylor Wilde and then recently signed indie star, KiLynn King defended their newly won Knockouts Tag Team Titles against Rosemary and Jessicka aka The Death Dollz.
For those unaware, Holly Letkeman aka Rosemary is known for a long list of things including being the longest-tenured person on the Impact roster alongside former world champion Eddie Edwards. However, if there’s one thing ‘The Demon Assassin’ is certainly known for by Impact fans is her habit of wanting to bite her opponents, particularly biting their heads or face.
Throughout the match, Rosemary tries on a number of occasions to bite KiLynn King, but the former AEW star must have done her homework as she thwarts almost every attempt by Rosemary to take a chunk of her head. That is until Rosemary finally grabs KiLynn near the end of the match and takes a big ole bite of King’s head as well as her red hair much to the agony of one-half of the Knockouts tag champs.
Sure The Coven would retain their titles by the end, but Rosemary’s almost inhuman persistence in wanting to bite Impact’s newest Knockout throughout is both hilarious and absolutely crazy.
#8. PCO’S Shoulder
With the preshows out of the way now we talk about the official matches on the card and…oh boy what an insane moment this was
During the Last Rites match between Eddie Edwards and PCO, the French Canadian Frankenstein took a bump in the match leading to his shoulder “popping out” in a weird and uncomfortable way which horrified both the crowd and the commentators alike.
Now this wasn’t the first time something like this happened to Perfect Creation One as a similar moment took place during a one-on-one bout with Steve Maclin on an episode of Impact. Unlike that match in 2022, PCO attempted to “put his shoulder back into place” by ramming his shoulder into the ring post which I guess popped it back into working condition…but then again PCO’s not human so maybe something like that doesn’t really bother him all that much.
#7. Callihan Turns on The Design
It’s a moment we all knew was going to happen and thank god it did…
In the three-on-four handicap match between Digital Media Champion Joe Hendry, Dirty Dango and Santino Marella, and the Design many wondered if former World Champion, Sami Callihan would be able to co-exist with the rest of the group following months of miscommunication and distrust…turns out, Nope.
Towards the end of the match, Callihan was prepared to deliver his Cactus Driver 97′ finisher when Deaner (the leader of the Design) stopped him and went underneath the ring to grab a black baseball bat which has infamously been associated with Callihan since 2018.
With Deaner handing the bat to Callihan with a sinister smirk on his face things looked too dire for Santino, instead, Callihan walloped Deaner in the mid-section with the bat before giving his signature ‘thumbs up, thumbs down’ gesture and topping it all off with a Cactus Driver 97′ onto Deaner.
It was a twist many saw coming but that doesn’t take away from how good it was.
#6. Santino Marella’s In-Ring Return
Speaking of good moments from the handicap match, Santino Marella was able to capitalize on Callihan’s “betrayal” of the Design by grabbing out of his singlet a familiar-looking sock puppet. This of course was his patent Cobra puppet that the former Intercontinental Champion had used throughout the latter half of his WWE career.
With a dazed Deaner getting back up to his feet, Santino hits the Cobra before scoring the three count and thus getting the win for his team. The victory was a really special one for Impact’s Director of Authority as it not only saw Santino wrestle for a major promotion for the first time in nine years, but it was also in front of his son Macro who finally got to see his father compete on the big stage.
#5. The Octopus Gets Crushed
The three-way elimination match for the X Division Championship was a great balance of high-flying spots and technical wrestling which shouldn’t come as much of a surprise considering the bout involves Trey Miguel, Mike Bailey and Johnathan Gresham.
When the time came for the first elimination in the match, defending champion Trey Miguel wanted to make sure it was memorable and it certainly was.
During the match, Gresham puts Bailey in a figure four leglock in order to wear down the former X Division Champion when suddenly Trey re-emerges back into the screen by hitting his double knees seaton manoeuvre called the Meteora on Gresham, eliminating him from the rest of the match.
What makes this moment really good is the fact that as Trey is pinning Gresham after hitting the Meteora, Gresham still has Bailey into the figure four which leads to the referee having to untangle Gresham and Bailey out of the hold.
#4. The Art of Success
Let me just start off this entry by saying the opening Ultimate X match for the Impact World Tag Team Titles is easily one of the best matches in recent Impact history to start off a pay-per-view.
However, this entry will only be talking about the finish which is just a picture-perfect way to wrap up a contest that is already seen as a match-of-the-year candidate.
After taking out both members of the Motor City Machine Guns with a series of offences including Ace Austin hitting his finisher ‘The Fold’, partner Chris Bey signals to Ace to lift him up with it appearing at first that he’ll be going for his signature move ‘The Art of Finesses’ to finish off Chris Sabin.
Instead, Bey goes for the Art of Finess not to take out Sabin but to him grab the ropes so he could be able to grab the titles held in the middle of the X structure. Sabin quickly makes his way to the X as well leading to a tussle between both Sabin and Bey for the titles, but Bey is able to unhook the belts and drop both of them for Ace Austin to pick up thus securing the victory for the Bullet Club’s resident Impact stars.
Also, bonus points for the moment when a defeated Chris Sabin can be visibly seen saying the words ‘Fuck’ upon falling back to the matt after Ace captures the tag titles.
#3. Nick Aldis Returns
In November of last year, former TNA and NWA World Champion, Nick Aldis shocked the wrestling world when he announced via Instagram that he was asking to be released from the NWA. This led to his being suspended by the company president, Billy Corgan.
Aldis would eventually leave the promotion after the suspension and by the start of 2023, many speculated as to where he would appear next with some believing he would likely go to the WWE. So you can only imagine how surprised many were to see Nick Aldis show up to give some commentary to the up-and-coming Maclin vs. Kushida world title match announcing that he signed a deal with Impact Wrestling.
This news is especially shocking to long-time Impact fans as Aldis (formerly known as Magnus in TNA) has spent the previous years railing against the company giving the impression that he would never return to the company that brought him to American audiences back in 2009.
However, it seems that Mickie James’ husband is going to be around for some time and if the face-to-face confrontation between Aldis and Maclin is any indication we might be looking at a future world title main event, which brings to…
#2. Purrazzo & Maclin Win The Belts
The biggest selling point of the entire pay-per-view was seeing who became the new Impact Wrestling Knockouts and World Champion following the vacancies of both Mickie James and Josh Alexander.
Despite, Impact’s impressive attempts to make former Cruiserweight Champion and NJPW star, Kushida look like a credible contender for the world title, most expected Maclin to come out on top. Which he did by becoming the new Impact World Champion and even getting President Scott D’Amore to come out begrudgingly to put the belt on him.
While many expected Maclin to win the world title in his match, the outcome wasn’t so clear-cut for the main event between Jordynne Grace and Deonna Purrazzo for the Knockouts World Championship. The two longtime rivals went on to have another incredible match with Purrazzo defeating The Juggernaut once again becoming the Knockouts World Champion.
Interesting side note, Purrazzo’s match with Grace at Rebellion was the 3rd time they faced off in Impact not to mention it was the 3rd time Purrazzo become the Knockouts Champion. Her husband won the world title later in the night making Deonna and Maclin the 3rd couple in recent Impact history to have held both the World and Knockouts titles at the same time.
#1. The Hardcore War
Okay, so I might be cheating here as this isn’t one specific moment but rather a series of moments that takes place in one match but to be honest it’s really really hard to choose just one moment in the Team Dreamer vs. Team Bully match. Instead, I’m just gonna list the highlights aka what I think are the most memorable parts of the match.
- Bhupinder Gujjar slicing Brian Myers open with a Cheese Grater
- Kenny King walking to the ring with a trash can lid on his head
- Killer Kelly using a stable gun on King, Myers and Moose before turning it on herself
- Masha blasting Kelly with a steel chair
- Masha doing a swanton bomb to the outside using a chair
- Members of Team Bully holding Kelly down on her knees
- Kelly biting Bully Ray’s arm
- That spot where everyone was in or applying a submission hold
- Masha spitting in Dreamer’s face
- Dreamer hitting Masha with a Dreamer Drive onto a chair & later with a piledriver
- Kazarian hitting a Springboard Cutter on the Good Hands onto the tables outside
- Various Referees refuse to hold the ladder for Bully
- Referees ganging up on Bully
- And finally…Dreamer paying homage to Jimmy Snuka with a splash off the ladder onto Bully through a table.
Like I said, there were A LOT of moments.
What was your favourite moment or moments from Rebellion 2023 and what was your favourite match on the card?
Be sure to leave your thoughts in the comments section and click the link below for more wrestling-related content:
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